SOUTH AMERICA INVESTS IN PLYWOOD QUALITY BUILDING A GLOBAL CUSTOMER SUPPORT SUCCESS IN NEW PATCHING Issue 15 Published by Raute Corporation LVL SPECIAL THE RESPONSIBLE REVOLUTION RAUTE NOW RAUTE NOW RAUTE NOW RAUTE NOW RAUTE NOW RAUTE NOW Dear reader, IT IS NOW almost a year since our latest issue of PlyVisions. A lot has happened. 2012 was a good year for Raute - after years of hard times. Our order intake, revenue and profits all improved significantly. We are very grateful and happy for this development as we realize the overall economy and market situation did not improve. Let me express my thanks to everyone who made the 2012 positive development possible: our customers, employees, business partners, etc. We are now deep in 2013 and it seems that the gloomy times will continue, especially as southern Europe is in a severe crisis. We can only hope that the situation will not spread any more. Raute and the "eco-system" we are part of cannot really change the economy, but we have to comply with the given business environment. Raute's contribution is to develop our offering so that we can help our customers succeed even better in their markets. Special focus in this issue of PlyVisions is on LVL or, more generally, on EWP and on what Raute has to offer for that market. Good expectations are based on the positive development of the housing sector in North America and the continuously rising share of wood frame building in Europe. We have seen clear indications of a growing interest among our customers. Raute is continuously developing the entire LVL production process, not only the machines. An example is the potential of a new concept for producing LVL out of thicker veneers than traditionally. At the first glimpse this change may look small, even insignificant, but it actually affects the entire process. In these harsh times everyone needs to be concerned about his production costs and product quality. Raute's newgeneration automatic veneer patching line is a solution to help with both matters. Finding valuable use for the unavoidable by-products of plywood and LVL production on one hand and keeping the energy costs down to minimum on the other are challenges for many companies in this business. Raute's big introduction, RauteGreen Heat and Power plant, is a solution to both. It is natural and understandable in uncertain economy and markets and consequently low demand, that most plywood and LVL producers do not see the need for investments for new or increased capacity. However, everyone in the industry needs to be more and more competitive at the same time. Often the fastest and most efficient way to boost competitiveness is to improve the existing process. For this, Raute's technology services offer a lot of potential. More about these services in this issue. I wish all of you enjoyable moments with this issue of PlyVisions and all the best success in your business in 2013 and beyond. See you at Ligna! WE HAVE SEEN CLEAR INDICATIONS OF A GROWING INTEREST AMONG OUR CUSTOMERS. Tapani Kiiski President and CEO 2 PLYVISIONS 4 CONTENTS Raute Now LVL SPECIAL The responsible revolution LVL takes a stand The rise of the global LVL market Be the leader in the LVL world with Raute 2 4 4 8 12 15 Market area review: Focus on South America At your service Building a global customer support Keen demand for long-term cooperation Raute Expert Services Modernize! Service agreements 18 24 24 25 27 28 30 One-sided glue application New energy solutions A new era in veneer patching has begun! Two new veneer production lines to Ilim Bratsk Raute green veneer mill concept Appointments 32 33 34 36 39 43 LVL SPECIAL What's driving the move to use more and more engineered wood such as LVL in buildings? While cost per span effectiveness is usually viewed as the main reason to use LVL in constructions, most building professionals involved include the environment, as being part of their inspiration. More about LVL and its world of opportunities on pages 4­17. 18 MARKET AREA REVIEW South America invests in plywood quality and cost efficiency. More about the global plywood market on pages 18­23. PlyVisions is Raute Corporation's Customer Magazine. Editor-In-Chief: Veli-Matti Lepistö Editorial group: Ulla Lahtela, Matti Ukkonen, Markus Halmetoja, Eija Salminen Layout: Onnion Oy, Toni Talvenheimo Printing house: Markprint 4/2013 Cover photo: iStockPhoto Address changes: Publisher: Raute Corporation, P.O. Box 69, FI-15551 Nastola, Finland, tel. +358 3 829 11, fax +358 3 829 3511 Copyright Raute Corporation. All rights reserved. Reproduction permitted only with permission from Raute Corporation. ISSN 1459-3165 36 LONG-TERM PARTNERSHIP Ilim Bratsk and Raute have more than 40 years of partnership. Two new veneer production lines were launched at Ilim Bratsk last summer. More about the large modernization project on pages 36­38. PLYVISIONS 3 LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL REVOLUTION ­ THE RESPONSIBLE WHAT'S DRIVING THE MOVE TO USE MORE AND MORE ENGINEERED WOOD SUCH AS LVL IN BUILDINGS? TALLER OR LOW-RISE STRUCTURES, RESIDENTIAL OR COMMERCIAL, WHILE COST PER SPAN EFFECTIVENESS IS USUALLY VIEWED AS THE MAIN REASON TO USE LVL IN CONSTRUCTIONS, MOST BUILDING PROFESSIONALS INVOLVED IN THIS MOVEMENT INCLUDE THE ENVIRONMENT, AS BEING PART OF THEIR INSPIRATION. THEY ARE DRIVEN BY THE NEED TO FIND SAFE, CARBONNEUTRAL, AND SUSTAINABLE ALTERNATIVES TO STEEL, BRICK AND CONCRETE. LVL ALLOWS DESIGNERS TO ACHIEVE BOTH OF THESE OBJECTIVES: HIGHER DENSITY AT EFFICIENT COST AND A SMALLER CARBON FOOTPRINT FOR THEIR PROJECTS. Text: Roumiana Vassileva · Photos: Metsä Group 4 PLYVISIONS LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL Cross-ply LVL meets CLT to provide unique aesthetics, strength and rigidity, combined with ecological sustainability to "My Green World" Pavilion ­ an almost otherworldly structure, designed by Dutch 2D3D Agency and supplied by Metsä Wood. LVL was selected for the project due to its flexibility in design, high structural properties and speed of construction. PLYVISIONS 5 LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL 22,000 m2 of LVL roof panels were used to build the shopping center Karisma in Lahti, due to their high level of technical stability, fire safety and warm bright look. After examining a wide range of building materials, Finland's leading designer of public and commercial buildings, Innovarch Architects, chose LVL for its exceptional versatility, efficient cost per span ratio and low carbon foot print. THE TECHNIQUE OF gluing veneer sheets, oriented longitudinally in parallel to the processing direction, was not a European invention. In the US, the manufacture of aircraft components by gluing 3.6 mm (1/7") Sitka spruce veneers along the length of the grain began already in 1944. In the late 1960s, the Forest Products Laboratory (FPL) in Madison, Wisconsin, initiated an extensive research program, whose aim was to improve the manufacturing techniques, product values and quality assurance methods for LVL. A breakthrough was achieved when a significantly lower-cost thermosetting phenol adhesive and hot pressing were implemented, obtaining a product with very high tensile strength. The high characteristic tensile strength, combined with assured quality, were the decisive characteristics that led to the manufacture of a new revolutionary product, Micro-Lam®, by Canadian Company Trus Joist in 1972, officially considered the world LVL inventor. LVL development in Europe was led by the Finnish Metsäliitto Group. Back in 1974, Metsäliitto evolved from a centralized organization representing forest owners and raw material suppliers into a forest industry enterprise, involved in mechanical wood processing and pulp and paper manufacture. In order to find alternatives to further investments in new sawmills, the company embraced the idea of pioneering the industrialized production of LVL in Europe, marketed under the Kerto® LVL brand ­ the first EU manufactured LVL. After LVL gained popularity in Europe and proved its efficiency as standalone EWP and component of EWP systems (floors, walls, roofs), the product was positioned in the 90s as a high-end, customized EWP for the solutions market, with a distinctive value added operational service: adapted connectors, software and design, technical literature, engineering support, job site trouble-shooting and supervision. This, coupled with its high structural capability, enables LVL to capture high sales value down the chain. UNDER THE HOOD OF LVL Laminated Veneer Lumber (LVL) is typically produced from rotary-peeled 3 mm dry and graded softwood veneers, which are then covered with phenolic glue, scarfed, overlapped or butt jointed, and bond together in a press under heat and high pressure. The so produced 21 - 90 mm thick and 1.2 - 2.5 m wide panels are then further machined to the finished dimensions, requested by the customer. Distinguished are two types of LVL: in Parallel-ply LVL all veneers are laid in the same direction, parallel to the panel length. The product is perfect for beam applications and achieving long spans with minimal deflection. In Cross-ply LVL approximately 20% of 6 PLYVISIONS LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL BUILDING PROFESSIONALS ARE DRIVEN BY THE NEED TO FIND SAFE, CARBON-NEUTRAL, AND SUSTAINABLE ALTERNATIVES TO STEEL, BRICK AND CONCRETE. the veneers are laid crossway, perpendicular to the panel length, making the product a preferred choice in applications where exceptional dimensional stability and high compression strength are required. builders to reduce the on-site labor, the building erection time and simplify the erection equipment, which leads to significant job site savings. Equally a preferred choice in the expanding method of Off-site manufacture (Prefab) compared to solid timber, LVL is more predictable and stable, with less differential movement compared to timber and with less waste to dispose of. LVL has significantly higher mechanical resistance compared to Glulam and solid timber. For example, if we compare the needed depth of a load bearing beam (same thickness and load bearing requirements), then a solid timber C24 beam would need 160 mm depth, a Glulam GL-32 beam would need 120 mm depth and an LVL beam would need only 75 mm depth*. THE INCISIVE DESTRUCTION OF STEREOTYPES Innovative materials such as LVL have the power to fuel growth, increase top and bottom line revenues, and keep customers coming back for more. Being a leader in a respective market consists of seeing what everybody has seen and thinking what nobody has thought. Let´s "see" together why LVL is an appliedstructured innovation... LVL has numerous advantages over other traditional building materials (sawn timber, brick, concrete, steel, Glulam). As the wood defects (i.e. strength-reducing knots) have been removed and randomized within thin layers, LVL is stronger, straighter, and more uniform than traditional sawn timber. The phenomenon of shrinkage and swelling is reduced, saving the manufacturer costly call-backs on the job site. Due to its composite nature and pre-graded veneers for stiffness, LVL is much less likely than traditional timber to warp, twist or bow, all by having in addition a lower thermal conductivity compared to brick and block. Therefore, engineered timber structures using LVL in its frame are easier to make more thermally efficient for airtightness, U values, reduced cold bridging at the junctions than structures using concrete and bricks. Made in a factory under controlled specifications and having lighter weight than steel or concrete beams, LVL allows MANY TIMBER professionals start having their glances attracted by LVL. Why? From the production point of view, LVL allows for a larger usage of raw material base versus sawn timber or Glulam ­ smaller and larger than the standard diameter logs could be suitable for peeling but not for sawing. In addition to resulting into a strong and stable product, the LVL technology allows for a better yield out of a log versus other EWP: for example, 2.1 m3 logs are needed to manufacture 1 m3 of LVL (48% yield under bark), while 3.2 m3 logs are needed to manufacture 1m3 of Glulam (31% yield under bark). But this is not all ­ in LVL manufacturing, the log yield is further maximized by the manufacturer through accurate moisture content, visual defect and ultrasound veneer grading, which allow for the lower grade veneers to be used in the inner plies of the LVL panel or for Residential housing in Viikki, Helsinki, Finland. the manufacturing of non-load bearing / industrial applications. LVL is mainly used in structural applications such as beams and headers, columns, rimboard, lintels, purlins, rafters, truss chords, wall studs, wall and roof panels; in Industrial applications like scaffold boards, concrete forming beam chords, composite doors' rails and stiles, mobile homes components, stair stringers; and as flanges for i-Joists. · *) Source: Step 1 ­ Introduction to Eurocode 5: materials and calculation rules PLYVISIONS 7 LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL METROPOL PARASOL IS ONE OF THE MOST VISIONARY URBAN TIMBER PROJECTS IN THE WORLD. 8 PLYVISIONS LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL Roumiana Vassileva LVL TAKES A STAND: from skyscrapers to innovative seismic solutions JUST OVER A CENTURY AGO, THE ARCHITECTS AND ENGINEERS WHO INVENTED THE SKYSCRAPER FRAMED US IN THE DIRECTION TO BECOMING AN URBAN WORLD. TALL BUILDINGS OF CONCRETE AND STEEL HELPED MAKE URBAN DENSITY POSSIBLE. BUT THE BUILDINGS THEMSELVES COME AT A HEAVY, AND OFTEN HIDDEN, ENVIRONMENTAL PRICE. CONCRETE AND STEEL ARE SOME OF THE MOST ENERGY-INTENSIVE MATERIALS ON THE PLANET. THE MANUFACTURE AND TRANSPORT OF CONCRETE, FOR EXAMPLE, IS RESPONSIBLE FOR ABOUT 5% OF THE GLOBAL CO2 EMISSIONS, MORE THAN THE ENTIRE AIRLINE INDUSTRY. Text: Roumiana Vassileva · Photos: Metsä Group MANY ARCHITECTS TODAY, in order to put the desired green label on their work, use a green roof, a couple of solar panels, natural insulation, water recovery systems etc. Good things, for sure, but unfortunately not good enough to make the difference. What then will make the difference? The solutions for our urban environments which have a significantly lighter climate impact than today's incumbent major structural materials such as concrete, bricks and steel. Rising awareness of the environmental benefits of timber, combined with advances in wood technology and Engineered Wood Products manufacturing, have aligned to make multi-storey engineered wood framed buildings not only possible but safe and cost effective. Several comprehensive studies completed across the globe show that mid-rise (six to 12 stories) and tall buildings (up to PLYVISIONS 9 LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL The construction of Metropol Parasol reaches a height of 28 m and covers a surface area of around 11,000 m2. 30 stories) can be safely, efficiently, and economically built using mass timber construction techniques. In response, architects and engineers around the world are increasingly exploring and verifying the possibilities. Canadian architect Michael Green has developed an innovative engineered wood framed skyscraper for Vancouver that could spark a renaissance in using wood to build urban high-rise projects. If realized, Green's tower could be one of the "greenest" skyscrapers in the world ­ and at 30 stories, perhaps the tallest of its kind. Mass timber building techniques combined with Engineered Wood Products such as LVL, I-joists, CLT, LSL and Glulam, have been successfully proven in a number of projects worldwide, including a 10-story wood apartment building in Australia, the Stadthaus ­ a nine-story apartment building in EastCentral London, and an eight-story office building in Austria. The International Building Code (IBC) already allows wood-frame construction for five stories (and more if the structure includes a mezzanine or terrace) in many types of building occupancies, including multi-family and offices. These buildings, which utilize dimension lumber, LVL and CLT panels as well as Glulam beams and columns, have proven themselves to be cost-effective alternatives to steel and concrete. Mass timber skyscraper construction allows engineered wood to move to the next level, as these kinds of buildings could perhaps accommodate the planet's nearly two billion new urban dwellers expected over the next 20 years, all by remaining environmentally friendly, with a neutral carbon footprint as a target. LVL IS A STUNNING ENGINEERED WOOD PRODUCT, WHICH ALLOWS FOR COMPLEX AND ICONIC TIMBER STRUCTURES TO BE IMAGINED AND SAFELY BUILT. Raute's turn-key LVL mills: functional outside, intelligent inside, all engineered on a compact foot print. How? The structures would reduce carbon emissions associated with construction in several ways. First, it takes less energy to produce Engineered Wood Products than to produce steel, bricks or concrete. As a renewable resource, forests absorb carbon while growing. And the buildings themselves store large amounts of carbon in the form of wood. A 30-story tower might store around 600 metric tons of CO2, the equivalent of the annual emissions from 118 average passenger cars. In addition to acting as a carbon sink, LVL is also a stunning engineered wood product, which allows for complex and iconic timber structures to be imagined and safely built. Architect Jürgen Mayer H. won the competition for redesigning the Plaza de la Encarnación in Sevilla in 2004. With its six distinc- tive `parasol' structures made from LVL, produced by Finnish EWP Manufacturer Metsä Wood, Metropol Parasol is one of the most visionary urban timber projects in the world. The construction reaches a height of 28 m and covers a surface area of around 11,000 m². The structure consists of glued cross-ply LVL panels arranged in an orthogonal grid to a spacing of 1.5 x 1.5 m. The thickness of the panels ranges from 68 to 311 mm. The largest of about 3,400 wooden parts measures 16.5 m high by 3.5 m wide. Scientists, architects, building professionals and laboratories keep accumulating proofs that Engineered Wood Products such as LVL, on top of having original visual aesthetics, can also live up to modern fire and earthquake building codes. In a fire, LVL panels develop a thin char layer which protects the 10 PLYVISIONS LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL beams and panels were the sure choice for framing the 7-story condominium tower, on which was performed the world´s largest earthquake shake table test (NEESWood Capstone Project). wood underneath from igniting. And in buildings taller than ten stories, the engineered wood beams and panels are combined with steel cross-beams to provide earthquake and wind resistance. In July 2009, in Japan, LVL beams and panels together with OSB sheeting and Glulam were used in erecting a seven-story wood-framed condominium tower, on which was performed the world's largest full-scale earthquake shake table Test. The NEESWood Capstone Project was developed to test new design methods for multi-story engineered wood-frame buildings during large seismic events. The project featured a seven-story, 12 x 18 m (40 x 60 ft) condominium tower, with a weight of nearly half a million kilograms (almost a million pounds), with 23 oneand two-bedroom living units and two retail shops on the ground level. The condo building was subjected to Japan's E-Defense (Earth-Defense) shake table, which simulates the ground motions of an earthquake. Performed were a series of tests, from 6.7 to 7.5 on the Richter scale. The results were impressive: minor drywall cracks from window and door corners and a very minimal nail withdrawal. The vibrational frequency of the building also did not change, which indicates that the fundamental structural system in the building suffered no appreciable damage. Another example of an LVL framed exquisite multi-story building is the NMIT Arts & Media building in New Zealand. All of the structural beams and columns used in the frame are of LVL, manufactured specifically for the project by Nelson Pine Industries Ltd. Similarly, the shear walls and floor panels utilize LVL as the base material. LVL was preferred for the project due to its high strength, predictability and proven performance in commercial building applications. As an Engineered Wood Product, LVL is naturally fire resistant and, unlike structural steel, can be designed so that it requires no additional fire protection. The NMIT Arts & Media building utilizes a combination of a straightforward gravity-resisting LVL frame with sophisticated lateral load resistance. Seismic strength is provided by pairs of rocking shear walls that feature post- tensioning and energy-dissipating connections. Out of LVL were made the building´s roof trusses, framing, structural timber poles, shear walls, some of the internal paneling and the interior stairs. The College of Creative Arts on Massey University's Wellington campus (New Zealand) is another award winning multi-story LVL framed construction, using the combination of post-tensioned precast concrete shear walls and LVL columns and beams, which allow the building to rock and sway during an earthquake. It would then spring back to its original position - allowing reoccupation of the building as soon as possible after such a seismic event. Of course, there are precedents for tall wooden buildings around the world, resisting in seismic environments. Japan has 19-story wooden pagodas that have stood for more than 1,400 years. The contribution of modernity are Engineered Wood Products such as Laminated Veneer Lumber, which combined with new design techniques allow for damage avoidance rather than controlled failure of structural systems. · PLYVISIONS 11 LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL THE RISE of the global LVL market LVL DEMAND ACROSS THE GLOBE IS THE FUNCTION OF USAGE FACTORS MULTIPLIED BY THE LEVEL OF ACTIVITY (E.G. HOUSING STARTS, RESIDENTIAL AND NON-RESIDENTIAL PROJECTS ETC.). CONSIDERED ALREADY A MATURE EWP IN NORTH AMERICA, LVL IS IN THE EARLY-MID STAGES OF THE PRODUCT LIFE CYCLE IN EUROPE, BUT THERE HAS BEEN A SIGNIFICANT EXPANSION OF CONSUMPTION OVER THE PAST TEN YEARS, AS EUROPEAN PRODUCERS ARE INCREASINGLY USING THE PRODUCT IN BUILDING SYSTEMS. Text: Roumiana Vassileva · Photo: Metsä Group Metsä Wood LVL (Kerto®) and birch plywood were chosen to create stunning ceiling and wall elements in the concert hall at Mariinsky Theatre, St Petersburg, Russia. 12 PLYVISIONS LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL OVER THE NEXT DECADE, LVL CONSUMPTION IS PROJECTED TO GROW RAPIDLY. THE EU HOUSING AND TIMBER FRAME MARKET In several of the EU countries the euro crisis is continuing to hold construction activity in check. This trend is exacerbated by the situation of the world economy, which remains difficult. However, construction investment is expected to stabilise in the EU zone in 2013 and to show a modest growth in 2014. Favourable financing conditions in terms of historically low mortgage rates in some EU member states, for example in Germany, Norway and Switzerland, are likely to increase the affordability of housing and support housing investment, driving the figures of the EU construction output slightly upwards. These 3 countries are attracting the capital of many investors, thanks to their economic stability. Further ahead, with the detrimental impact from price corrections in housing markets waning, construction investment is predicted to turn modestly positive. 2012 v/s 2011 new housing starts 500 000 2011 housing starts 2012 housing starts 400 000 According to the latest market research from the European Architectural Barometer, major European markets are set to see a boost in timber frame construction over the next 5 years. In the UK, 59% of architects expect to design more timber frame buildings while only 21% expect an increase in use of on-site concrete construction. The timber frame trend appeared most strongly in France where 70% of the architects said they expected an increase in timber frame buildings. Despite the positive attitude, the 2012 TF share in France was only 10%, as the market still traditionally relies on brick and block building method. Germany has a traditionally highly developed prefab industry, which represents 15.5% from a total of 20% TF share in the building methods. Scandinavian countries offer a lot of potential for EWP, as they have traditionally focused on timber in housing construction. An estimated 70% of the houses have a wooden frame, however, the housing markets are relatively small. In 2012, Finland, Denmark, Norway and Sweden combined, represented only 127,000 housing starts. The climate in Scandinavia is challenging. The trend towards pre-fabricated houses offers significant opportunities for LVL and Glulam in framing applications in the future, due to important labor and time saving advantages as well as strength and stability. THE LVL CONSUMPTION IN EUROPE Despite the economic recession and dip of housing starts in some key EU markets, EU LVL consumption increased from 172,520 m3 in 2009 to 190,940 m3 in 2012 (11%), EU LVL exports excluded. Over the next 8 years, LVL consumption is projected to grow rapidly. This growth will be supported by: increased number of housing starts in key EU markets as of 2015 and growing TF share from total EU residential and non-residential construction; larger usage ratio of I-joists with LVL flange versus solid timber flange; growing off-site manufacturing; larger substitution of solid timber floor and roof trusses with LVL; potential new EU LVL manufacturers establishing in the EU market and developing organic and incremental LVL growth; Glulam gross margins being currently squeezed to dangerously low levels, presuming Glulam price increases to take place in the forecasted period (this would soften the price difference between Glulam and LVL and allow LVL to gain market shares due to certain higher structural properties). 300 000 2004­2020 LVL Consumption 600 000 EU LVL Demand m3 500 000 400 000 EU LVL exports to NA m3 200 000 100 000 300 000 200 000 100 000 0 UK Germany France Scandinavia 0 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020 Source:Euroconstruct, DEC 2012 Source: Raute Corporation BI PLYVISIONS 13 LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL The two largest EU markets for LVL are UK, which in 2012 represented an estimated 34%, and Scandinavia, which represented approximately 39% from the total EU LVL demand. Other important markets in Europe include France, Germany, Switzerland and Benelux. Also Russia is expected to be an expanding market in the next 5 years, following the government key initiative to boost development of domestic timber manufacturing and production of value added engineered timber products. THE KEY GLOBAL STRUCTURAL LVL MARKETS In North America, the stronger economic growth, a modest improvement in the employment situation, historically low inventories of new homes and pentup demand will contribute to a gradual improvement in residential construction over the next few years. An interesting fact is that house sizes are already back to pre-recession levels. Solid gains in both single-family and multi-family housing production resulted in nationwide housing starts rising 12.1% versus 2011 to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 954,000 units, according to newly released data from the U.S. Commerce Department. In NA, traditionally timber frame accounts for 90% of the low rise buildings. LVL usage rate has been advancing steadily for more than two decades as more builders substitute LVL for multi-ply dimension lumber in beam and header applications. Apart from the dip in 2010, LVL consumption will continue to grow. LVL now has in excess of 50% of the total NA residential beam and header market and holds 64% from the entire I-joist flange market. Leading NA EWP Consultancy Forest Economic Advisors (FEA) reports that the LVL demand in North America is projected to grow to 3.2 Mio m3 by 2017, or 129% increase versus the LVL volume consumed in 2012. This will put a strain on local LVL manufacturers, as the actual total LVL domestic production capacity equals only 2.7 Mio m3, including LVL lines which have been shut down during the industry slow-down, but not dismantled yet. Therefore, by 2017 FEA forecasts 500,000 m3 LVL shortage in NA, which will be partly offset by imports from Europe and Asia and partly by upgrades in local LVL production capacity. North American LVL Consumption 140 120 100 80 60 40 20 0 I­J Flange beams, headers & other beams, headers & other (R) 80 % 75 % 70 % 65 % 60 % 55 % 50 % 45 % -99 -00 -01 -02 -03 -04 -05 -06 -07 -08 -09 -10 -11 -12 -13 -14 -15 -16 -17 -18 -19 -20 -21 -22 -23 -24 -25 -26 40 % Source: FEA APART FROM THE DIP IN 2010, LVL CONSUMPTION WILL CONTINUE TO GROW. 2012 new housing starts in Australia dropped to a level of 139,360, a 5.9% decrease versus 2011. The Australian Housing Industry Association (HIA) anticipates a rise to 147,980 units in 2013 and then to 158,290 in 2014. LVL is gaining market share in Australia in many residential building applications that have historically been dominated by hardwood, Glulam and steel, mainly in heavy structural elements such as floor bearers, beams and lintels. As a result of the constraints on supply, hardwood consumption in Australia has fallen rapidly over the past decade, and the high price of steel has made it less competitive. The 2012 LVL consumption in Australia reached 200,000 m3, almost flat versus 2011. Housing starts in Japan in 2012 rose 23.2% % from the previous year to 1.06 Mio units, backed by the government's mortgage rate incentive policy, helping lower mortgage rates for homes that clear certain conditions, such as their ability to withstand earthquakes and be energy efficient. This program expired in Oct 2012 but due to increasing sales tax rate from 5% in 2013 to 8% in 2014, analysts believe that the pent-up trend will continue. The Japanese market is characterized by a high 57% share of timber frame from the total construction market. The market share of traditional houses (stone, brick, concrete) has declined over the past few years and this trend is expected to continue. Although housing commencements are projected to increase modestly over the next five years, there is considerable room for expanding the use of LVL, as the construction of timber frame houses is projected to grow at a rate of 5% annually. LVL consumption in Japan reached 240,000 m3 in 2012. The Structural LVL framing in floors, walls and roofs is expected to grow by 5% annually over the next 5 years. Non-structural applications such as furniture, door components, stair stringers etc., are forecasted to grow at a slower pace, reaching an annual increase of 2%. · 14 PLYVISIONS LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL Thin LVL billets at Shin Yang LVL mill in Miri, Saravak. BE THE LEADER IN THE LVL WORLD WITH RAUTE NEW WOOD SPECIES ARE INTRODUCED TO LVL IN EUROPE WHILE IN ASIA LVL IS CONQUERING NEW TERRITORIES. THE SUCCESS OF RAUTE LVL TECHNOLOGY CONTINUES. Text: Hannu Sinko · Photos: Hannu Sinko, Pollmeier Shin Yang, Malaysia Shin Yang Plywood Sdn Bhd has installed a RautePro LVL line in its plywood mill in Miri, Sarawak. The delivery included an automatic scarfing line and a lay-up, prepressing and hot pressing line. Shin Yang ­ the largest plywood producer in Malaysia with 1.4 million m3/a - is going to use wood raw materials from its many plantations around Miri for making structural LVL with the new line. The RautePro lay-up line with Raute LEG gluing technology (liquid extrusion gluing) is the first of its kind. Veneer lengths from 4ft to 8ft can be used and continuous LVL with or without cross plies can be produced equally efficiently. The lay-up line is automatic and requires only minimal labour. This is Shin Yang's first step into automated production lines in veneer-based products. The 4-opening hot press is a well proven Raute step press, which allows production of LVL in custom lengths from 5 m to 13.5 m. Hannu Sinko shows that LVL can also be made of thicker veneer. PLYVISIONS 15 LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL RautePro LVL hot press at Shin Yang plywood mill in Miri, Sarawak. Taizhou Kemian, China Taizhou Kemian Wood Industry Co., Ltd., a subsidiary of Dalian Kemian started up a greenfield Raute LVL mill in Taizhou in the Jiangsu Province near Shanghai. The mill, delivered jointly by Raute's Nastola and Shanghai factories, is the first world class LVL mill in China. The mill uses Chinese and Russian larch as raw material to produce LVL with very high structural properties. The good properties of larch LVL make it suitable for export to the USA, Europe and Japan, although Kemian's primary target is to respond to the growing demand on the Chinese home market. All main production lines of the mill were delivered by Raute. The 6 m long larch logs are first debarked and cut to 1.9 m long peeler blocks on a log handling line. Debarked blocks are then conditioned 24 hours in hot water spray chambers to prepare them for peeling. The conditioning chambers were engineered by Raute and manufactured locally. The blocks reach a core temperature of 45° C after which they are peeled with a 6-ft RauteSmart peeling line. Veneer is cut to 6x6-ft sheets and heart and sap wood veneers are stacked in separate bins for improved drying. After the Raute 16-section dryer the veneers reach a moisture content of 3 to 6%, which is suitable for making LVL. Randoms and veneer sheets, which have defects, are sorted off after drying and sent to a RautePro composer. There the defects are detected by a camera and automatically clipped away and the remaining good veneer pieces are composed to full sheets. All veneers, composed and full sheets, then proceed to the scarfing line. There the sheet dimensions and open defects are checked once again with a camera before scarfing. The strength of each veneer is measured and the veneers are sorted to different grades based on their visual and strength properties before they are sent to the lay-up line. Only three operators are needed to supervise the RautePro lay-up/prepressing line. Automatic feeders supply veneers in correct order to the Raute LEG gluing unit. Phenol-formaldehyde resin mixed with an automatic Raute glue mixer is used for making structural LVL. A continuous lay-up is formed and prepressed. Billets of desired length from THE 3-OPENING RAUTE LVL HOT PRESS HAS A CAPACITY OF 60,000 M3/A. 6 to 18.5 m are cut from the continuous lay-up and sent to the hot press. Billets 27 to 90 mm thick can be produced on this line, which also allows making of continuous LVL with cross ply veneers. The 3-opening Raute LVL hot press has a capacity of 60,000 m3/a. The unique Raute step press technology allows making of LVL in all customer lengths without cutting waste. Hot pressed billets are tested with a blow detector and then hot stacked. After cooling billets are brought to the Raute billet handling line, where they are cut to shorter lengths, ripped, stacked and wrapped to customer packets. 16 PLYVISIONS LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL LVL SPECIAL Beech is a heavy and strong wood species and beech LVL is alike. Pollmeier, Germany: "Smart. Strong. Stylish!" Pollmeier Furnierwerkstoffe is building a completely new kind of LVL mill to produce a completely new kind of LVL. This mill in Creuzburg, Germany, will be the first to use beech for LVL. Until now softwoods have been considered as the only suitable raw material for structural LVL. Pollmeier is, however, re-inventing the wheel here with beech, with which they already have long experience being the leading hardwood sawmilling company in Europe. But LVL will be their first product to be made of peeled veneers. Beech being a very heavy and strong wood species (700 kg/m3 vs. 430 kg/m3 for spruce), also the LVL made from it will be alike. Because of the superior mechanical properties of beech LVL, it will find new applications replacing steel structures rather than just competing with existing Engineered Wood Products. The appearance of beech will help to find applications where the LVL beams remain exposed in the finished construction. Pollmeier's process will include re-gluing and ripping of LVL boards to make LVL beams, where the exposed face of LVL shows the slim appearance of veneer layers and glue lines. Such beams and posts will surely find their applications for instance in modern glass facade constructions. Beech is known to be a somewhat challenging species when it comes to its deformation while being dried. This is the case with both sawn timber and peeled veneers. Knowing this Pollmeier has spent long hours to come up with THE RAUTESMART PEELING LINE TURNS 6 AND 8 FT BLOCKS TO VENEER OF 2.5 TO 4 MM THICKNESS. WHY LVL? The LVL process is the only efficient way to make use of the abundant available hardwoods for construction. WHY BEECH? ­ Beech is the dominant hardwood in Europe. RALF POLLMEIER, POLLMEIER FURNIERWERKSTOFFE the correct process and to select the right equipment. Profound drying tests at Moralt with thick beech veneer convinced Pollmeier that in Raute's dryer it is possible to keep a high humidity level throughout the drying cycle and to produce dry but still very flat beech veneers. To Pollmeier's LVL mill Raute delivers all the lines for veneer processing including veneer peeling, drying, scarfing, composing and lay-up. Raute's good reputation in LVL technology as well as its experience with the processing of beech convinced Pollmeier. The RauteSmart peeling line turns 8 and 6 ft long beech blocks to veneer of 2.5 to 4 mm thickness. The lathe can handle 6 and 8 ft blocks mixed as this is required to maximize the recovery from beech logs. The Raute SmartScan XY-charger centers every block accurately so that as much as possible of full sheets can be recovered from the veneer mat. Veneer clipping is controlled by the Raute VCO 2900 clipper scanner. Full sheets and randoms min 770 mm wide are stacked in five bins. Green veneer is dried in a Raute 24-section 6-deck roller dryer which is directly coupled to two veneer scarfing units. A Mecano VDA Lite camera scans all veneers exiting the dryer. Full size good veneers are allowed to scarfing, while randoms and sheets with defects by-pass the scarfing and are conveyed to the Raute veneer composer. Full size scarfed veneers are finally visual and moisture graded with Mecano VDAs and MVA analyzers and stacked. In Pollmeier's LVL mill the dry beech veneer stacks are stored in an automated and humidity controlled high-rise storage. The storage keeps track on all veneer grades and delivers stacks to the lay-up line on demand ­ automatically. No forklift operation is needed. The Raute lay-up line is specially designed for beech veneers and continuous press. Vacuum cup manipulators feed the heavy beech veneers to two Raute CC curtain coater lines. Veneers coated with phenolic resin are first paired and then laid-up to a fan. A small buffer storage between the lay-up and the press makes sure that there is always material to lay-down in front of the press. · PLYVISIONS 17 MARKET AREA REVIEW MARKET AREA REVIEW MARKET AREA REVIEW MARKET AREA REVIEW SOUTH AMERICA INVESTING IN PLYWOOD QUALITY AND COST EFFICIENCY SOUTH AMERICA TODAY WOOD FROM WELL-MANAGED INDUSTRIAL PLANTATIONS IS THE MAIN RAW MATERIAL FOR THE PLYWOOD INDUSTRY IN SOUTH AMERICA. FAVORABLE CLIMATE FOR FOREST GROWTH, VAST AREAS AVAILABLE FOR PLANTATIONS AND BRISK ECONOMIC GROWTH HAVE ATTRACTED INVESTORS IN PLANTATIONS AND IN FOREST INDUSTRIES. THE BIGGEST INDUSTRIAL INVESTMENTS ARE IN SEVERAL NEW PULP MILLS. THE BEST VALUE FROM WOOD CAN BE ACHIEVED WITH ITS OPTIMIZED USE FOR PULP AND FOR MECHANICAL WOOD PROCESSING, SUCH AS PLYWOOD. RAPID GROWTH of the pine plywood industry in Chile is based on maximizing the value of pine trees in integrated plants, where the large-diameter butts are used for plywood, the middle part for sawn lumber and tops of the logs and the thinnings for pulp. Also the green chips generated at plywood mills from the highest-density surface part of the trees are optimal for pulp. Part of the plantation trees are pruned up to six-meter height and render face veneers without knots. Although pulp wood can be harvested in less than ten years, economically better results are achieved by letting the best trees continue growing; such trees grow rapidly in volume and value after thinning. Various pine species are the main plywood raw material in South America's temperate climate zone. Pinus elliottii and Pinus taeda are planted on the Atlantic side of the continent, whereas Pinus radiata in Chile. Eucalyptus grandis is another important plywood raw material and can replace tropical hardwood plywood. The plywood industry on the tropical zone of South America has used native hardwood species but is gradually changing over to fast-growing hardwood plantation trees. There are also many alternative uses for plantation wood in the growing South American economies. The plywood industry can pay a very com- 18 PLYVISIONS MARKET AREA REVIEW MARKET AREA REVIEW MARKET AREA REVIEW MARKET AREA REVIEW petitive price for the wood, because the added value in plywood is higher than in most other wood products. HIGH-QUALITY PLYWOOD FOR MANY END USES Most of the plywood produced in South America is exported to the North American and European markets. Also local plywood consumption is growing. Brazil, the largest plywood producer on the continent, used to export 80% of its plywood production until recently but last year more than half of the production was used on the domestic market. South American plywood has established its own market position in the end uses, where its features are superior compared to other types of wood-based panels. Such good features are for instance strength and rigidity, holding of screws and fasteners, durable surface and tolerance to moisture variations. Arauco, the biggest plywood manufacturer in South America, uses the slogan `More than just a pretty face' to describe their plywood. Clean face veneers are made from pruned trees, but equally important are the other features of plywood, like solid core veneers, gluing performance and consistent quality. RAUTE'S TECHNOLOGIES FOR COST EFFICIENCY The South American plywood industry has invested in Raute's new technologies in order to earn savings of the most important manufacturing costs: wood, glue, labour and energy. Accurate block centering is extremely important to maximize the recovery of full sheets and face veneers. Raute's Smart Scan XY charger with curtain lasers and auto-calibration is the most accurate on the market and has been a highly profitable investment for many customers. To minimize the glue costs Raute has developed gluing methods such as liquid extrusion and curtain coating. The glue application profile is constant and the amounts are controlled by mass flow metering. Accurate glue application improves the plywood quality and reduces glue consumption by about 15 % compared to roller spreading. Many Chilean plywood mills are changing to Raute's liquid extrusion gluing systems. Cost of work is rapidly increasing in South America, too. The first and easy step to lower labour cost has been the reduction of manual work involved with random size and low quality veneers. Raute's XY charger has dropped the amount of randoms by half and with advanced drying controls the veneer quality can be further improved. The second step for reduction of these costs is automation. To increase productivity the two plywood mills under construction in Chile will apply Raute's latest automation e.g. in veneer patching, fully automatic layup and robotic panel repairing. The drying process stands for the highest energy consumption. The highhumidity drying concept in Raute's veneer dryers reduces the consumption of both steam and fan energy. The humid drying air improves the veneer quality. Advanced moisture analyzers reduce overdrying and, as a result, energy consumption. Mecano's dry veneer moisture analyzers and camera grading for dried veneers will be used in both new plywood mills. TWO LARGE PLYWOOD MILLS UNDER CONSTRUCTION IN CHILE Raute is the main machinery supplier in the two large plywood mill projects under construction in Chile. CMPC's plywood mill, their second, will start production in mid 2013. Half a year later production will start at Arauco's new mill built after the previous was destroyed in a fire. Both new mills will make high-quality sanded softwood plywood from Radiata Pine. Raute has been the main machinery supplier and technology partner also in all earlier plywood mills of both these companies. Good experiences from earlier projects, PLYVISIONS 19 MARKET AREA REVIEW MARKET AREA REVIEW MARKET AREA REVIEW MARKET AREA REVIEW Timo Reinikainen continuous technology development and local service where the main reasons why Raute was chosen for these new projects, too. CMPC will double the production capacity of its Mininco plywood mill up to 500,000 m3/a and make this mill one of the largest in the world. The 8-ft peeling line makes longgrain veneers from the high-quality log surface and cross-grain core veneers from the lower quality inner part of the log. Short-grain core veneers are first clipped into 8 x 8 ft sheets, stacked and cut by a stack saw. Mecano's analyzers (DMA/VDA) will be used for the dryer MOST OF THE PLYWOOD PRODUCED IN SOUTH AMERICA IS EXPORTED TO THE NORTH AMERICAN AND EUROPEAN MARKETS. controls and dry veneer grading as in the previous drying lines from Raute. The fully automatic layup lines and press loaders represent new technologies. The project also includes modernizations of existing peeling lines and drying lines for a higher capacity. The gluing on the old layup lines will be changed from spray to liquid extrusion, the same as in the new. Arauco, the biggest plywood manufacturer in South America, lost more than half of its plywood capacity in early 2012, when the newly built Nueva Aldea plywood mill was completely destroyed by fire. Only a few days after the fire the company decided to rebuild the mill. The project was named Nueva Aldea Fenix. The production capacity of the new mill will be 350,000 m3/a. Raute was chosen to deliver all production lines including two 8-ft peeling lines, three drying-grading lines, four fully automatic layup lines with liquid extrusion gluing, three 45-opening presses and two robotic panel repairing lines. The new mill will be one of the most automated plywood mills in the world. Raute's latest technologies are for instance the automatic random stacking in peeling lines, the automatic veneer patching line, Mecano's new micro-wave based MVA dry veneer moisture analyzers in all drying lines and the fully automatic layup lines. At the same time Arauco will make some modernizations at their Horcones plywood mill, where Raute's robotic panel repairing line is already in use. Gluing will be changed from spray to Raute's liquid extrusion. PLANT MODERNIZATIONS IN SOUTH AMERICA There are two mega projects going on in South America this year, but most of Raute's projects are new manufactur- ing lines to existing plywood mills and modernizations of existing machinery. The trend is to larger and more efficient plywood plants. Brazil alone used to have hundreds of plywood mills some ten years ago. While small mills have disappeared, leading plywood manufacturers have invested in modernizations to improve quality, cost efficiency and competitiveness. Raute's technology is also suited for modernizing of other manufacturer's machinery. This year Raute will add XY scanning and optimizing systems to mechanical block chargers originally delivered by Cremona and Fezer to a plywood mill in Ecuador. A complete Raute's knife carriage with new controls was recently installed to a Keller veneer lathe at another customer in Ecuador. A leading Brazilian plywood manufacturer has just ordered a new rotary veneer clipper, a clipper scanner and stacker controls from Raute to be installed in a peeling line originally delivered by Fezer. All these modernizations will improve veneer recovery and quality. The Chilean plywood manufacturer Tulsa was the first company in South America to apply Raute's SmartScanXY block centering with curtain lasers. That investment clearly improved their recovery and productivity. Last year Tulsa was also the first company in South America to invest in Raute's liquid extrusion gluing system. Glue cost saving with liquid extrusion has been about 15 % compared to conventional roller spreaders making this again a very profitable investment. The focus of this investment was not in labor saving but in glue cost saving and quality improvement. This new RautePro layup line has manual veneer feeding and manual layup, but the extruder itself and its controls are exactly the same as in the automatic RauteSmart layup lines. · 20 PLYVISIONS MARKET AREA REVIEW MARKET AREA REVIEW MARKET AREA REVIEW MARKET AREA REVIEW Jukka Siiriäinen ASIA Veneer Based Industry in Asia 2012 WAS a year of capacity adjustment on matured markets and of growth in developing markets. In matured markets capacity reached the market demand and volumes were very much dictated by the housing demand. All in all in Asia, the housing deficit has shrunk and growth in demand shifted from China to India. At the same time the growth in demand in terms of volume has eased down. China is by far the biggest market but cooling measures with stabilized growth in housing has calmed the growth of plywood demand. Plywood producers are now focusing more on export while domestic growth has slowed down. Export markets demand higher-quality plywood and many markets still receiving low quality cheap Chinese plywood struggle with local certification and anti-dumping cases. It is clearer that local plywood producers are divided between producers for local market and exporters. India has a strong growth in housing starts, which is driving demand for plywood up. Local industry can grow only in limits of raw material available. This has increased import volumes both of logs and panels, and will continue. Indian import duty and tax regulations are somewhat confusing to many, thus leaving most of the trading in the hands of local Indian companies. The fastest growing economy along with China has been Indonesia. Growth shows in the panel industry as improved local demand, but also as funds channeled to plantations. The Indonesian plywood industry has clearly understood the importance of plantations and vast areas planted will make them a stronger and stronger player on the plywood and LVL market. With its current development in industry Indonesia will soon be claiming back its place as a major plywood producer is Asia, especially in South East Asia. · THE FASTEST GROWING ECONOMY ALONG WITH CHINA HAS BEEN INDONESIA. PLYVISIONS 21 MARKET AREA REVIEW MARKET AREA REVIEW MARKET AREA REVIEW MARKET AREA REVIEW RUSSIA Plywood production in the CIS region WITH THE WORLD'S largest forest Martin Murphy NORTH AMERICA Upwards and beyond AS THE NORTH AMERICAN market continues to inch upwards, we look back at the past 4-5 years with a need to understand what just happened and what we have learned? The trends and outcomes of this period are well documented but the survivors' stories may be worth a review as we look to our future. I think it is safe to say that we have all become "leaner and meaner" in order to survive. During this process, success was measured in incremental gains that over the long term made major contributions to quality, productivity and profitability. Raute's focus was exactly that. From control systems to improved material flow no stone was left unturned. This trend will continue in 2013 as mills cautiously but optimistically move forward with modernization and upgrade activities. Raute continues to improve peeling line optimization with new products coming online like the SmartScan HD system and the ControlLogix PLC conversion for the high speed electric rotary clipper. Accuracy and recovery are the keys here and Raute can deliver on both fronts. Mill dryer capacity will continue to be a bottleneck as the green veneer peeling productivity continues to grow. The introduction of industries highest accuracy moisture meter (the MVA) along with the state of the art Raute dryer control, will aid the drying process relieving some of this bottle neck through process improvement. Raute's dryer technology has been leading the pack for many years and will continue to push developments in this mill critical area in 2013. Our new patching line concept has been well established in the world and we strongly believe that the product is in demand in North America. Read more about patching elsewhere in this issue. · reserves Russia produces mainly birch plywood. About half of the plywood produced in Russia is exported, most of all to the United States, Egypt and Europe. In 2012 there was an increase both in the construction of housing and furniture resulting in an increase of almost 10% to a total output of 3.1 million m3. 93% accounted for hardwood (birch) and 7% for softwood plywood. The trend is towards increasing the production of softwood plywood mainly in Siberia and the Far East which are located in the vast coniferous forest zone. The production volume in 2013 is planned to maintain at the 2012 level both in square and large-sized plywood production. Raute, having years of experience in the production of birch plywood machinery, continues to maintain its strong position in the equipment market offering customers the latest technical solutions for any budget. In 2012 Raute delivered several new peeling, drying, clipping and stacking lines to the CIS countries. The bestseller was, however, our new RauteSmart patching line, three of which were sold to Russia. In 2012 a number of mills went through modernizations and will continue the process in 2013. The main increase in production resulted from modernization of existing machinery and lines. The target was to reduce the costs for raw materials and to raise the 22 PLYVISIONS MARKET AREA REVIEW MARKET AREA REVIEW MARKET AREA REVIEW MARKET AREA REVIEW EUROPE Plywood markets in Europe THE GROWTH ON the European plywood markets is expected to be modest and believed to change slightly through demand and structural concentration. Europe can be divided into areas each with its special features in terms of development and needs. In Eastern Europe plywood demand is on the grow as a result of the improving general living standard and the need for better housing, which will boost the growth in building construction. The growing building construction reflects on the plywood production, which is enhanced by excellent availability and price of raw material and labour. In Western Europe plywood production is steered by the growing popularity of wood constructions and related solutions, which shows as a growing demand for LVL. The general rise of demand for renewable and recyclable building materials as well as decorating trends and home renovations also create a demand for new veneer based products. With the high price level of energy, labour and raw material in Europe the importance of more efficient production and continuous development grows. With these measures it is possible for the producers to maintain their competitiveness and even to enlarge their market share. We at Raute have developed products and services to help our customers in the toughening competition. We believe that with the use of well-maintained latest technology it is possible to beat the continuously rising costs. For example modernizing of existing machinery with new automation the need for labour and the consumption of energy can be reduced, not to mention a better yield attained from the raw material. At the best, investing in a new line or machine can replace several old ones and thus also save in variable costs. We believe cooperation between plywood producers and machine manufacturers will deepen into closer partnerships. Cooperation may comprise areas in maintenance; training and R&D. Actions will be planned for years ahead, which will secure the future competitive strength of both. The future needs are associated with saving of energy, environmentalfriendly solutions as well as work safety and ergonomics. Investing in R&D and being the leading researcher in its field Raute will maintain its position as the best partner also in the future. · Olga Harju THE TREND IS TOWARDS INCREASING THE PRODUCTION OF SOFTWOOD PLYWOOD MAINLY IN SIBERIA AND THE FAR EAST. automation level. The modernization of old Raute 3V and 4V series lathes and the installation of new chargers are of particular interest. Currently Raute is engaged in talks with several companies planning to establish new plywood enterprises in the European part of Russia (Vologda, Kaluga, Nizhny Novgorod regions). Raute's key strengths on the CIS market are the good references, the existing Raute machinery in use, the dedicated and experienced personnel, and Raute's strong presence through its own offices. Raute is actively developing its services through a subsidiary company, increasing the stock of spare parts and relying on local, Russian-speaking service personnel. · IN WESTERN EUROPE PLYWOOD PRODUCTION IS STEERED BY THE GROWING POPULARITY OF WOOD CONSTRUCTIONS AND RELATED SOLUTIONS Timo Kangas PLYVISIONS 23 BUILDING A GLOBAL CUSTOMER SUPPORT BUILDING A GLOBAL CUSTOMER SUPPORT Petri Lakka BUILDING A GLOBAL CUSTOMER SUPPORT ONE OF THE KEY VALUES AND CORNERSTONES IN RAUTE'S STRATEGY IS TO SERVE OUR CUSTOMERS WITH PROFITABLE SOLUTIONS GLOBALLY. OUR OBJECTIVE IS TO BE A FAST, RELIABLE AND TRUSTED PARTNER WITH KNOWLEDGE OF PLYWOOD AND LVL PROCESSES AND MACHINERIES AND OF LIFELONG SERVICE NEEDS. WE WOULD LIKE OUR CUSTOMERS TO FEEL THAT NO MATTER WHAT HIS LOCATION IS, WE ARE ALWAYS NEAR. Text: Petri Lakka · Photo: Veli-Matti Lepistö · Image: iStockPhoto RAUTE IS BUILDING a global customer support on many levels. Our dedicated account managers are able to help and be a communication channel between Raute and the customer. They can help whether the question is of new investments or of daily service needs ­ often in the customer's own language. It is difficult to imagine any closer customer relationship and co-operation. We receive direct feedback from customers but at the same time our staff is aware of their targets. An essential part of our customer service is the speed of technical and spare parts service. To develop this, Raute is building a network of global service centers and service points. Depending on local customer needs we are resourcing local service centers with mechanical and automation know-how. The services at the mill site are supported by local or global spare parts and logistics centers, e.g. in Finland, Russia and Canada. In parallel with building the global service center network, Raute is developing the contents of its technology services. Long term maintenance and spare parts agreements along with process support and modernization services are just something worth mentioning. Not forgetting Raute's sales network we are developing components and wear parts that even better fulfill customers' future requirements. Following articles give practical examples of Raute's global activities and cooperation with our customers. · 24 PLYVISIONS BUILDING A GLOBAL CUSTOMER SUPPORT BUILDING A GLOBAL CUSTOMER SUPPORT Keen demand for long-term cooperation A NEW PRODUCTION LINE PROJECT IS ALWAYS A SIGNIFICANT INVESTMENT. ITS LIFE TIME COSTS INVOLVE INITIAL COSTS, OPERATING COSTS, MAINTENANCE COSTS AND COSTS FOR POSSIBLE MODERNIZATION OR UPGRADE PROJECTS. Text: Juha Rantalainen · Photo: Veli-Matti Lepistö OUR GOAL in Raute technology services is always a long-term collaboration, whereby we can continuously improve and develop our customers' production and processes. The service contract, which plays an important role in Raute's technology services, is a safe way to increase and maintain the reliability and efficiency of production processes, as well as to optimize the life-time costs of production lines. Contract-based service collaboration is a natural extension to the production line investment, whether we are talking about a single line or a mill-wide delivery. The content and scope of the contract is always set to meet the customer's needs in an optimum way. Raute has a strong experience in improving and maintaining the overall efficiency of its production lines. In contrast, our customers have a strong knowledge of their production process and end product quality. We believe that combining these two areas of expertise we are able to achieve excellent results in terms of product quality and reliability of the production equipment. Raute has delivered hundreds of production lines around the world during last decades. (We wish to transfer the knowledge gained from these deliveries to the benefit our customers.) Today we also offer local maintenance and spare parts services from many locations globally. In addition to local services we still make hundreds of inspection and maintenance visits every year from our head office in Nastola to our customer mills around the world. The number of maintenance visits shows a positive growth, and we can now tell that 2012 was a record year for Raute. This is naturally a great thing, but tells us all, that the results we have achieved with these collaborations have been positive also to our customers in terms of gained added value. As an example of this kind of collaboration we can mention the maintenance and spare parts service contract with UPM signed in the spring 2012. · PLYVISIONS 25 BUILDING A GLOBAL CUSTOMER SUPPORT BUILDING A GLOBAL CUSTOMER SUPPORT RAUTE EXPERT SERVICES Enabling your success RAUTE'S WIDE RANGE OF EXPERT SERVICES HELPS YOU TO UNLEASH THE FULL POTENTIAL OF YOUR PRODUCTION PROCESSES, MACHINES AND PERSONNEL. WITH THE HELP OF RAUTE'S EXPERTS THE DIFFICULT TASK OF EITHER CREATING NEW BUSINESS FROM SCRATCH OR IMPROVING THE EXISTING BUSINESS BECOMES PLEASANT. Text: Markus Halmetoja · Image: Veli-Matti Lepistö WE HAVE DIVIDED our expert services into three main sections and all of them contain services which play an important role in a mill's life-cycle. The services are focused on new projects, existing operations and training. NEW PROJECTS ­ WELL PLANNED IS HALF DONE A well-executed investment project is often based on a sound business plan, in which the commercial factors of the future business are taken into account. Equally important is the correct choice of equipment to realize the plan to the full. The technical plan plan gives you the means to realize your already defined business plan by analyzing the possible technical options and choosing the most suitable ones. When planning a new project, in many cases the raw material that can be obtained in quantities sufficient for industrial processes is new to the investor. With the material being unfamiliar, the uncertainty can hinder the invest- ment process or lead to wrong conclusions. Raw material testing gives you a better understanding of the properties, qualities and needs of your raw material and gives you the confidence to invest in mill-scale production. Also optimal technical parameters and processes can be recommended. After the investment has been made, many starting businesses face a period of non-efficient work as the personnel familiarize themselves with the new equipment and processes. Start-up assis- 26 PLYVISIONS BUILDING A GLOBAL CUSTOMER SUPPORT BUILDING A GLOBAL CUSTOMER SUPPORT EXPERT SERVICES FOCUS ON NEW PROJECTS, EXISTING OPERATIONS AND TRAINING. RAW MATERIAL TEST FOR POLLMEIER Beech is known to be a somewhat challenging species when it comes to its deformation while being dried. This is the case with both sawn timber and peeled veneers. Knowing this Pollmeier has spent long hours to come up with the correct process and to select the right equipment. Profound drying tests at Moralt with thick beech veneer convinced Pollmeier that in Raute's dryer it is possible to keep a high humidity level throughout the drying cycle and to produce dry but still very flat beech veneers. tance helps you get your new investment to full capacity in the shortest possible time. EXISTING OPERATIONS ­ WHEN IT'S TIME TO GO FURTHER At times throughout the investment lifecycle, sound advice is needed to develop further in an optimal fashion. A development plan gives you a well-defined analysis and suggestions on the ways to improve your existing business. It can be through refining the existing processes or by adding something new to the picture. Sometimes detailed measurement data is essential to get full understanding of the performance, possibilities and bottle-necks of the production. Mill and line audits give you specific data on the selected subject either on the whole mill or individual lines. At times one has to think "out of the box" to further develop working practices and processes. Production assistance helps when you are experiencing problems in your production processes or you want to develop them to the next level. TRAINING ­ NEVER STOP LEARNING Raute training is focused to get the knowledge of your personnel up to the level needed for full-capacity operation. It also helps your personnel on the quest for excellence, by giving a new insight on the production processes and working practices. · PLYVISIONS 27 BUILDING A GLOBAL CUSTOMER SUPPORT BUILDING A GLOBAL CUSTOMER SUPPORT MODERNIZE! The latest technology at low investment RAUTE IS CONTINUOUSLY DEVELOPING AND IMPROVING ITS TECHNOLOGIES AND SERVICES. SINCE 1908 RAUTE HAS DELIVERED THOUSANDS OF WOOD PROCESSING MACHINERIES AROUND THE WORLD AND NOWADAYS IT'S NOT UNCOMMON TO FIND OVER 40 YEAR OLD MACHINES IN PLYWOOD MILLS. OLD PRODUCTION LINES WITH INEFFICIENT PRODUCTION MAKE IT CHALLENGING TO MAKE A PROFIT. RAUTE HAS DEVELOPED A NEW MODERNIZATION CONCEPT TO HELP CUSTOMERS CONTINUOUSLY TO DEVELOP THE COMPETITIVENESS OF THEIR OWN MILLS. Text: Sampo Jäntti, Markus Halmetoja · Photos: Veli-Matti Lepistö NEW MODERNIZATION CONCEPT The target of the new modernization concept was to ensure our customers to achieve maximum advantage in the shortest possible time. A modernization process is not only just to add new technology and features to an existing production line. It is more like taking care of the production line during its whole life cycle. In the first phase of the audit Raute will determine the real condition of the production line and specify the maintenance and modernization needs. Then an overhauling and modernization plan is made together with the customer. The delivery, installation and commissioning will be carried out by Raute's skilled specialists. Training is also an important phase in the project to help achieve full pro- duction capacity and high quality. All modernization projects include a period of basic training in operation, safety and maintenance. Raute also offers tailored training packages. Raute's modernization products are developed to improve mill efficiency, environmental issues, work safety and working conditions. Small investment, short shutdown and short payback...this is what you really need! · 28 PLYVISIONS BUILDING A GLOBAL CUSTOMER SUPPORT BUILDING A GLOBAL CUSTOMER SUPPORT Production Manager Jyrki Uimonen is satisfied with the results of the modernization project. CASE METSÄ WOOD: Peeling line modernization IN MID 2012 RAUTE DELIVERED A LONG-AWAITED PEELING LINE MODERNIZATION TO METSÄ WOOD'S PUNKAHARJU LVL MILL. THE INTENTION WAS TO DEVELOP THE PEELING PROCESS AND TO SECURE A LONG LIFE CYCLE OF CERTAIN EQUIPMENT. THE MODERNIZATION PACKAGE INCLUDED A NEW VCA CAMERA, A NEW PC SYSTEM AND A VENEER TEMPERATURE ANALYZER. VCA AND VCO CLIPPER SCANNERS The VCA / VCO clipper scanners enable high-recovery green clipping. Not only open defects like holes and splits cameras can also detect bark wane for removal. With an optional moisture grader the cameras also sorts the veneers into different stacks by moisture in order to maximize the capacity of the dryer and the quality of the dried veneer. VCA is lower priced standard clipper camera system, while VCO ensures even more accurate defect clipping with color camera. The VCA / VCO softwares are based on Raute's experience in clipper scanners for over 20 years. They runs on a standard PC with low resource requirements. A solid state disc may be used and no moving parts are required. A graphical on-line diagnostics screen shows exactly what the camera sees and how the clipping decisions have been made. INTERVIEW WITH JYRKI UIMONEN, PRODUCTION MANAGER AT METSÄ WOOD PUNKAHARJU LVL MILL ON 26 FEB. 2013: What were the reasons behind the peeling line modernization? We wanted to improve the recovery of peeled veneer with better defect scanning and clipping. We also wanted to improve the moisture sorting of clipped veneer sheets for a positive effect on the capacity of all processes after peeling but especially on drying. How successful was the implementation from your point of view? The installation and start-up schedule went according to plan. The most difficult part of the project was to find the right program settings to suit our production but with the help of skilled A MODERNIZATION PROCESS IS NOT ONLY JUST TO ADD NEW TECHNOLOGY AND FEATURES TO AN EXISTING PRODUCTION LINE. and committed automation experts this challenge was beaten. Raute's performance was excellent. What are the results achieved with this new VCA unit? The biggest achievement has been a considerable increase in recovery of stacked veneer due to the fact that the end of the veneer ribbon can now be used more efficiently. The temperature measurement in peeling has improved and, together with the moisture analyzing, the clipped sheets can better be graded into proper stacks. Indirectly this modernization has increased the capacity of later processes. Has this modernization led to further actions in your plans? Yes. This recovery improvement has enabled us to plan other modernization cases in the future. How important do you find modernizations in general and what things stand out in these projects? Modernizations are naturally a significant part of the life cycle management of a line. From the schedule perspective the challenges in modernization projects are usually more critical than in totally new projects. Improved line or machine safety is now one of the most important issues for Metsä Wood. · PLYVISIONS 29 BUILDING A GLOBAL CUSTOMER SUPPORT BUILDING A GLOBAL CUSTOMER SUPPORT Raute's Service Agreement Principles Phase III Needed Spare Parts Phase II Preventive Maintenance Actions Raute North America at your service Phase I Inspection Visit SERVICE AGREEMENTS ­ TOOL FOR HIGH PRODUCTIVITY THE CHALLENGE OF CONSTANT PRODUCTIVITY AND QUALITY ENHANCEMENT PLACES NEW DEMANDS ON VENEER, PLYWOOD AND LVL PROCESSES. IT IS NECESSARY TO ANTICIPATE PROBLEM SITUATIONS BEFORE THEY OCCUR, TO SCHEDULE SHUTDOWNS OPTIMALLY AND TO CARRY OUT MAINTENANCE PROCEDURES RAPIDLY ­ JUST ON TIME. RAUTE'S ESPECIALLY TAILORED MAINTENANCE PROGRAMS MEET SUCH DEMANDS. Text: Petri Lakka THE FORMATION OF agreement-based partnerships with our North American customers is a further natural step in the life cycle development of production and maintenance. This creates totally new opportunities to develop processes and to set short and longer term development targets. Raute North America is ready to assist mills to plan continuous development of their production lines and to steadily improve the customers' future competitiveness. This, in turn, allows customers to focus more resources on their core businesses. nance is a full understanding of the conditions and behavior of the processes. Raute offers inspection visit modules for sub-processes or for whole production lines. What can these inspections tell us? In simple terms, they diagnose the overall condition of the processes and identify the need of preventive maintenance actions, reconditioning and tuning. As a result, Raute tailors the reconditioning and tuning services and preventive maintenance operations, and offers the completing spare parts. INSPECTION VISIT AS PREVENTIVE MAINTENANCE TOOL Raute has developed its service packages to best complement its customers' maintenance strategies. These services reflect Raute's profound process know-how and experience in the engineering and construction of plywood machineries. The prerequisite for all successful preventive mainte- FUTURE DEVELOPMENT OF PRODUCTS AND SERVICES FOR NORTH AMERICAN CUSTOMERS As a result of dedicated development, Raute's service concept embraces many new solutions for today's customer needs. We will continue to actively develop our services so that we remain at the forefront of the industry in providing our customers with overall performance management. · 30 PLYVISIONS BUILDING A GLOBAL CUSTOMER SUPPORT BUILDING A GLOBAL CUSTOMER SUPPORT NEW SERVICE OFFICE IN RIGA Late in 2012 Raute opened a new office in Riga. Its main goal is to create and strengthen the collaboration with Baltic companies engaged in the plywood business. We want to develop our delivery process in the Baltic area together with the customers and ensure flexibility of our production and service operations. Soon we are also opening a new warehouse for spare parts in order to ensure the shortest possible delivery times and secure a continuous production process to our customers. Raute Service Baltic is located in the industrial and port region of Bolderaja, Riga, to accelerate immediate response to our customers' needs. You are always welcome to visit our office and can be sure that we will use all of our energy and know-how to support your business growth. Dmitriy Nikitin, Alexander Kirpichnikov, Valeriya Aranovich, Ksenia Krapivnaya, Irina Lukyanova and Natalia Deeva. SUCCESS IN THE RUSSIAN MARKET IN RUSSIA, THE COUNTRY WITH THE WORLD'S LARGEST FOREST RESOURCES AND A DYNAMICALLY GROWING PLYWOOD INDUSTRY, MANY, IF NOT ALL MILLS, ARE WILLING TO IMPROVE AND MODERNIZE THEIR EQUIPMENT AND INCREASE PRODUCTION. THE MANUFACTURERS' competitive advantages, even the smallest ones, are being discussed broadly in our information age whereas dispute about the choice of high-quality equipment for the plywood production never settles down. One of these undeniable advantages of Raute in the Russian market is the presence of the Russian affiliated company ­ Raute Service LLC. Raute Service LLC helps the mills immediately to find answers to any questions related to Raute equipment from the tiniest screw bolt supply to machinery modernizations. Raute Service LLC is a team of experts in the field of logistics and customs, working daily to ensure the shortest delivery terms of crucial spare parts to the mills. The warehouse with those emergency spare parts ­ whose delivery time is critical for the equipment efficiency ­ is located in St. Petersburg. Its highly trained specialists in the field of indus- trial automation and mechanics are qualified to immediately respond and assist mills' service departments. As it is possible to plug remote online connections into the modern equipment, Raute Service experts can monitor the operating parameters of the equipment on-line and may offer consultations on-the-fly. Coaching has recently become a widespread practice; Russian and Finnish Raute experts together consult the mills' service and operator staffs directly at the spot, in order for them to get a better understanding of the equipment control and maintenance needs. Thus, mills with Raute equipment automatically get European service from Raute Service LLC - in the Russian language for Russian rubles and in full accordance with Russian law. And mills that do not have Raute equipment yet or want to buy it may get thorough advice and answers to all their questions as well. · Dainis Butans CONTACT INFO Raute Service Baltic Service Manager: Dainis Butans Email: Address: Gaigalas street 41, Riga LV-1016, Latvia Phone: +371 27844220 Fax: +371 67434680 PLYVISIONS 31 One-sided glue application has been a success: TENS OF DELIVERIES IN THE LAST FEW YEARS RAUTE HOLDS A STRONG POSITION AS A SUPPLIER OF LAY-UP AND PRESSING LINES FOR THE PLYWOOD AND LVL INDUSTRIES. Text: Jori Sopanen · Photo: Veli-Matti Lepistö ADVANTAGES OF RAUTE'S ONE-SIDE GLUE SPREADER · Both an extruder and a curtain coater can be installed on the same body · Applicable for bulk and flexible production · For all species and veneer thicknesses · Applicable for phenol and white glues · Suitable for all capacity and automation levels (Pro, Select, Smart) · Lower costs with precise amount of applied glue · Lower maintenance downtime with automatic washing · Clean and comfortable working environment · Higher productivity · Informative and userfriendly control panel for the control of the gluing process. As can be seen from the list above, the advantages of Raute's glue spreaders are outstanding. The development work still goes on and the very latest innovation is the automatic regulation of the glue amount on basis of the veneer temperature. This will give considerable savings in glue consumption and improve the product quality. For the upkeep of the glue spreaders Raute offers preventive maintenance and remote service to keep the productivity of our customers continuously on a high level. THE GLUE application methods range from traditional application with rollers to spray, extrusion and curtain glue spreaders and coaters used in one-sided application. In the last four years Raute has sold more than 20 one-sided glue spreaders around the world. RAUTE GLUE SPREADERS Higher energy and raw material prices, improvement of working environment and the growing expectation of higher productivity from our customers was the impulse for us to start the development of a one-side glue spreader for the plywood and the LVL industries. During the entire process Raute operated in close cooperation with glue suppliers around the world. The new application system would allow the application of both extruder and curtain glues with only minor changes. The starting point was mass flow monitoring and automatic regulation. Special attention was paid to the ease of maintenance with automatic washing systems and refined ambient equipment. GLUE SPREADER DELIVERIES The first liquid extruders (LEG) were delivered in early 2009 in connection with the modernization of two spray softwood layup lines at a Finnish plywood mill. Later the same year a new automatic layup line with glue extrusion was delivered to the same customer. Already with the first deliveries the precise application feature became apparent as did the maintenance and operator friendliness along with the automatic washing system. The first curtain coater (CC) was started up in 2011 and now Raute has delivered coaters to a number of new lay-up lines and upgrades. Several extruders and curtain coaters have been delivered to the LVL and plywood industry in Asia, China and Europe. This year Raute will deliver onesided gluers both for modernizations and for completely new plywood and LVL lay-up lines to South America and Europe. In the last four years Raute has sold 25 glue spreaders to different parts of the world: Europe, China, Asia, Australia and South America. Raute's glue spreaders are suitable for all layup lines in the Pro, Select and Smart product families. · 32 PLYVISIONS NEW ENERGY SOLUTIONS Energy is a major cost in mechanical wood industry and in the near future mills have to pay increasing amounts for heat and electricity. However, the plywood mills have more residues than they need even if they produced all necessary heat and power from their own residuals. The costs for electricity are rising more rapidly than for heat, which would make it profitable for mills to generate electricity from mill residuals for their own use and even to generate new businesses by selling it. Selling and transporting electricity is much easier than selling wet bark or chips. Investing in a traditional steam turbine process is typically too big for a single mill so very few mills have their electricity production. Raute is actively developing new solutions to generate electricity from mill residuals and, at the same time, heat for mill processes in a smart and flexible way ­ and all this at reasonable investment costs. Raute has strong mill-wide know-how of the mill process so we believe we can optimize the energy production, recovery and recycling between the processes better than traditional boiler suppliers. Environmental issues and bioenergy are a "must" in annual reports and presentations but we believe we can provide our customers with new and innovative solutions that are not only environmentally friendly but also profitable or can even generate new business possibilities for our customers. More about our new energy solutions at Ligna 2013 in Hannover, 6­10 May. Welcome! NEW TECHNOLOGIES NEW TECHNOLOGIES NEW TECHNOLOGIES NEW TECHNOLOGIES Chief Engineer A.P. Zhukovich, Production manager T.V.Denisova, Technology Manager G.A. Shamanina and Project Engineer A.V. Lashkov In our previous PlyVisions issue #14 we promised that "A new era in veneer patching begins". Now we proudly announce that A NEW ERA IN VENEER PATCHING HAS BEGUN! THIS MEANS THAT THE SET TARGETS HAVE NOW BEEN REACHED AND ALL THREE P2 PATCHING LINES HAVE BEEN STARTED UP AND ARE UNDER FULL PRODUCTION AT THE RUSSIAN SVEZA GROUP'S PLYWOOD MILLS. Text: Erkki Kauranen · Photos: Veli-Matti Lepistö BACKGROUND The P2 stands for the second generation of veneer patching technology. The development of this technology was initiated by feedback from our customers. There was an increasing demand for face veneer in the production of thinner panels and a decreasing amount of large-diameter logs available. Patching was regarded as a practical solution to quickly increase the amount of face veneer from smaller-diameter logs for the correct raw material balance in the plywood structure. The P2 technology comprises at least one patching level with one or two patching heads, depending on the veneer sizes. The patching heads are permanently installed in fixed positions on the patching frame whereas the veneers are moved and positioned under the heads by cartesian robots. A line may comprise 1- 3 patching levels and a by-pass conveyor which gives an additional veneer grading feature. Depending on the production conditions these lines can produce up to 9,000 patches per hour with uniform patching rules from the color camera recipe. With the latest intelligent camera technology the patching decisions and grading rules can easily be controlled in accordance with the most common grading standards. LINE INSTALLATION The installation work at the SVEZA UIFK mill was implemented in exceptionally warm and close cooperation. The mechanical installation took 10 days and the entire commissioning from the start of installation up to start of production only 2 months, which was a record with a new product as the patching line. Chief Engineer Mr. Zhukovich and Project Engineer Mr. Lashkov had carefully picked their subcontractors with long cooperation and experience 34 PLYVISIONS NEW TECHNOLOGIES NEW TECHNOLOGIES NEW TECHNOLOGIES NEW TECHNOLOGIES in mind, which also contributed to the successful start-up. "The installation was efficient with an experienced crew and good cooperation between Raute and UIFK specialists", says Chief Engineer A.P. Zhukovich. The customer and his subcontractors met with Raute's supervision crew each day after work at the site. In these meetings the goals, challenges and views were discussed for the next day, which also speeded up the practical installation. Among the challenges was the low workshop height for lifting and hauling along with some heavy line structures but with a good pre-planning and the experience of the installation crew these problems were solved. sharpening the lower die was ground 0.003 mm and upper 0.02 mm. Each die has a 5 mm sharpening allowance meaning a far longer life span than we ever dreamt of. Not one single die has been damaged during the entire three-line project at Sveza. Production Manager T.V. Denisova and Technology Manager G.A. Shamanina point out that attention was paid to quality issues, such as adherence of patches, right from the beginning and the results are very good. Capacity tests were made with two veneer sizes (4x8 and 5x10 ft.) but in future many other sizes used at the mill will be run, e.g. 4x9, 4x10, 5x8, 5x9 ft. Another important goal was to improve the usability of the line in terms of adjustability and maintenance. wood quality definitions throughout the whole Sveza Group. FUTURE We will continue with the same good technical solutions and further improve the ergonomics and capacity of patching lines. Some line options will be included in the scope of delivery. The delivery time from order to acceptance will be reduced by speeding up the manufacturing process and the commissioning work by means of our programming history and experienced crew. Advanced training programs for running the lines are under development in order to help customers squeeze out the full capacity and performance of the line. Close interaction with customers after delivery and in the beginning of the independent line operation will ensure a high running rate at high efficiency. · LATEST RESULTS One important goal was to improve the strength and durability of the cutting tools and dies. We can assure the results were superior as the first installation made 2 million patches per head before it was sharpened for the first time. Despite the big numbers the lower die was like a brand new and the upper showed tiny dullness without any impact on the patching quality. After LATEST CAMERA FEATURES The new patching lines were delivered with Mecano VDA-F camera systems which give the best grading and patching results compared to any other camera system on the market. Improved bark and white knot detection along with accurate split, micro crack and overlap detection enable the establishing of uniform grading rules and ply- ONE IMPORTANT GOAL WAS TO IMPROVE THE STRENGTH AND DURABILITY OF THE CUTTING TOOLS AND DIES. PLYVISIONS 35 Long-term partnership BETWEEN ILIM BRATSK AND RAUTE TWO NEW VENEER PRODUCTION LINES STARTED PRODUCTION AT THE RUSSIAN OOO ILIM BRATSK DOK PLYWOOD MILL IN THE IRKUTSK REGION ON JULY 6, 2012 AS PART OF A LARGE-SCALE MODERNIZATION PROJECT. THE NEW EQUIPMENT WILL INCREASE PRODUCTION OF COMMERCIAL PLYWOOD AT LOWER COSTS AND HIGHER QUALITY. Text: Mirja Mesimäki · Photos: Ilim Bratsk Dok 36 PLYVISIONS TODAY IS A SIGNIFICANT DAY FOR ILIM BRATSK DOK. IN THE 35 YEARS OF VENEER PRODUCTION NO SIGNIFICANT MODERNIZATIONS WERE IMPLEMENTED HERE. IT GOES WITHOUT SAYING THAT THE EQUIPMENT AS WELL AS THE TECHNOLOGY GOT OUT OF DATE. THEREFORE, TODAY I AM ESPECIALLY PLEASED TO CONGRATULATE THE MILL'S TEAM ON THE COMPLETION OF SUCH A MAJOR PROJECT THAT INFUSED NEW LIFE INTO THE PLANT. AND NOW THE COMPANY HAS BECOME ONE OF THE MOST ADVANCED IN TERMS OF TECHNOLOGY." Alexander Sovetnikov, General Director of Ilim Timber in the opening ceremony IT IS NO COINCIDENCE that Raute was chosen as the supplier of the equipment for the new lines. Back in the 1970s Raute delivered all equipment to the Bratsk Forest Industry Complex plywood mill with a designed capacity of 100,000 m3 of plywood per year. The first block was peeled in January 1977. On March 22, 1980 the mill reached an important milestone when it had produced one hundred thousand m3 of plywood. When the mill celebrated its 5th anniversary on January 14, 1982, its overall production had reached 250,000 m3. On August 21, 1987, one million cubic meters of plywood had been manufactured. The mill reached the designed capacity of large-sized softwood in 1986, and in 1988 the record output of over 178,000 m3. It was the biggest plywood mill in the Soviet Union with its large-size phenol-formaldehyde-glued waterproof softwood plywood produced with stateof-art machinery. Tatiana Zinovieva, who was sent from Bratsk mill to the Ust-Izhora plywood mill for training, recalls: "I remember the very old equipment at the Ust-Izhora plywood mill, part dating from the beginning of the 20th century. The trolleys with veneer had been pushed on rails into the dryer by women, but in Bratsk the peeled veneer ran automatically. The teams worked full of zest; it was a pleasure to operate with the new equipment." Uliana Shut, who started work at the mill in 1975, says: "We had competitions going on between the teams. I remem- PLYVISIONS 37 THE MAJOR UPGRADE OF THE PLYWOOD MILL FINALLY STARTED IN 2011 BROUGHT DRAMATIC CHANGES IN VENEER PRODUCTION TECHNOLOGY IN ITS WAKE. ber the chipper not keeping up with the veneer waste." The Raute equipment from the 1970s has earned back its price to the extreme; as Quality Director Ludmila Erzikova said in 2011: "The quality of our plywood is the second best after the Finnish, and this has been confirmed by both auditors and customers." However, it took long before the mill management understood that the equipment procured in the 1970s was far outdated and that a modernization was necessary. The first steps were, however, not taken until the 1990s. The modernization was scheduled for 1993, and decided in favor of Raute. Different options were worked out, but the project was repeatedly postponed by obstacles in Russia in the 90s and the world-wide crisis in 2008­2009. The major upgrade of the plywood mill finally started in 2011 brought dramatic changes in veneer production technology in its wake. Whereas the old technology combined the veneer peeling, drying and clipping processes, the new separates the operations into peeling and clipping, and to drying. The entire drying process is smoother with the new roller dryer than with the old mesh dryer. All in all, the processes are now fully automated, which both improves the working conditions and reduces harmful emissions. The mill modernization is aimed at reducing the cost of wood raw material and labor on one hand, and at improving the veneer and plywood quality and increasing the production volume on the other. The new efficient and advanced Raute lines for the production of 8-ft. long-grain and 4-ft. short-grain veneer with the latest generation equipment were commissioned in mid 2012 comprising two peeling, clipping and stack- ing lines and two veneer drying and grading lines. Now, with the equipment under warranty, the mill personnel technicians, operators, support services specialists ­ master all necessary operating and maintenance skills. Training of the personnel was conducted by Raute's installation supervisors during installation and commissioning, and continued during warranty visits by Raute specialists and was finally completed with Raute's advanced start-up assistance program. Project Manager Mirja Mesimäki states: "The eagerness shown by the mill teams in operating the high-tech equipment is appealing. Qualified manufacturing technicians, operators and mechanics, highly skilled automation service specialists, as well as implementation of new preventive maintenance methods ­ all these factors guarantee that the mill will meet all expectations". · 38 PLYVISIONS RAUTE GREEN VENEER MILL CONCEPT IT MAY BE A CLICHÉ, BUT SAYING "EVEN THE STRONGEST CHAIN IS ONLY AS STRONG AS ITS WEAKEST LINK" TELLS ALL THAT REALLY MATTERS WHEN IT COMES TO EFFICIENT VENEER PRODUCTION. Text: Markku Pärssinen · Photos: Veli-Matti Lepistö PLYVISIONS 39 AND AT THE END, THE OUTPUT CAPACITY OF THE GREEN VENEER CONCEPT MILL IS HIGHER AND WITHOUT ANY NEED OF INCREASING THE SPEED OF ANY INDIVIDUAL LINE. MODERN VENEER PRODUCTION is a closely linked chain of different production lines, machines and processes, where correct dimensionings, capacities and interfaces makes the big break in efficiency and capacity. With its vast experience Raute can offer an efficient and optimized way to build up a green veneer production unit, where all these important things have been taken into account. In the Green Veneer Mill Concept Raute offers its expertise of the whole veneer manufacturing process to the use of all customers. The concept seamlessly connects processes from log yard to peeling and from peeling to chip bins. Handling the green veneer production as one unit gives the possibility to find ways to optimize other important factors outside plain production figures as well. In this way factors such as energy consumption, value of side products and efficient production time can be taken into account in detail. Production benefits of the concept are realized through continuous and reliable operation. Since the processes have been designed as one unit, according to the same initial data, the matching speeds and capacities from line to line secure the achievement of the planned production. And at the end, the output capacity of the green veneer concept mill is higher and without any need of increasing the speed of any individual line. It truly shows the importance of the Raute formula: Quality-CapacityRecovery. For the implementation of the concept Raute offers various combinations of options: log lines, Windsor steam conditioning system, conditioning engineering, peeling lines, veneer waste chipping, core handling, bark and log handling. · 40 PLYVISIONS Kohila Vineer TO KOHILA, NEAR TALLINN IN ESTONIA, RAUTE HAS DELIVERED ITS LATEST AND MOST ADVANCED GREEN VENEER MILL. FOCUSING ON 4/5-FT BIRCH VENEER PRODUCTION, THE MILL IS ONE OF THE MOST EFFICIENT VENEER PRODUCTION UNITS IN THE WORLD. WITH RAUTE'S GREEN VENEER MILL CONCEPT, THE LINES WERE MATCHED AND FITTED INTO EXISTING PREMISES. KOHILA VINEER OÜ, currently part of Latvijas Finieris, started the project with Raute with the clear target of a modern veneer production unit. Mutual negotiations over the operation features, available space and required production gave the base for Raute to prepare different options for the mill. The most suitable solutions were picked and further developed to make the final lay-out base for this sophisticated veneer production unit. Raute's green veneer mill delivery to Kohila comprises three traditional production lines: a log cutting and debarking line, a RauteSmart peeling line and a side-product handling line. Despite the fact that the location of the conditioning pond in relation to the main production hall was not the optimal to start with, Raute together with Kohila Vineer was able to find a solution which also allows Kohila Vineer to further develop its production in the future. Over the past few years Raute has paid special attention to the development of its log handling lines and the delivery to Kohila Vineer is the first one where the new features are presented in such a big scale. New solutions such as conveyor constructions, dozers and kickers result in a reliable operation, which is easy to use and maintain. Smooth movements and silent operations are also distinct benefits of the new solutions. The biggest single development was still the totally new measurement table with a movable back stop. The new construction gives a great advance in capacity when comparing to other solutions. In addition to all the new features of the Raute log handling line in Kohila, PLYVISIONS 41 Valon Kone delivered their first modular VK8032 PLY debarker to the line. RauteSmart peeling lines are the key for high-capacity veneer production. In Kohila, it makes no exception. As the third RauteSmart peeling line to Latvijas Finieris group, it performs great quality veneer at a constant, high capacity. Even though the RauteSmart peeling line has made its mark as the standard of modern veneer production, Raute continues its development in order to make it more efficient and beneficial to its owners. In Kohila Raute also introduced the new flat nose bar construction, which gives both operational and quality benefits. The thicker type of nose bar enhances the veneer quality, since it reduces the vibrations making the peeling more stable. It also features the pre-setting possibility, so that the nose bar can be changed basically in the same way as the peeling knife giving big time savings when compared to conventional nose bars. In addition, nose bar adjustments can be made from the front side of the carriage, which saves time and makes the adjustment procedure safer and more convenient. In the clipping and stacking area the veneer mat is cut and graded according to the parameters of the VCA scanner. In the stacker area special attention has been paid to the smooth flow of the veneers, so that all sheets can be stacked reliably in designated bins. As the stacker area mostly presents the already well-known Raute operation at its best, the stack removal and automated bottom plate infeed offer new practical features. Here in Kohila Raute presents a layout where full stacks are taken out and new bottom plates fed in with chain conveyors at the same side of the stacker. This cost and space saving solution also enables the use of special-sized bottom plates in any bin, if required. The system includes one plate buffer slot for each bin, enabling fast dimension change at the stacker. Side-product handling removes the bark, log ends and veneer waste from the lines. Conveyors take the waste from the generating points starting from under the log deck and up to the stacker. This reduces the need of manual cleaning and gives more time to production. Bark and log ends are crushed into burn chips with a robust and highly reliable Saalasti crusher. A good feature of the crusher is that it tolerates small impuri- RAUTE ALSO INTRODUCED THE NEW FLAT NOSE BAR CONSTRUCTION. ties such as stones or nails without any effect on its operation. Veneer waste and cores are chipped with a Raute drum chipper to goodquality chips. The chips are screened and sent to chip bins with conveyors. In Kohila, people living nearby were taken into account from the beginning of the project and that is why for example all the chip conveyors outdoors are silent belt conveyors. On top of this outstanding production facility, operators can easily follow the operation of all the lines with the Raute Divita monitoring camera system. This recording monitoring system allows PLC information inputs and control. With this feature the system can follow e.g. the stack change procedure so that it zooms to the bin where the stack change is engaged and shows on the screen that everything goes as planned, including the bottom plate infeed, before zooming back on the general view. Special events and disturbances can be bookmarked on the recording and easily found for examination later on. Kohila Vineer mill presents the results of Raute's long-term development of the whole green veneer production process and of co-operation with Latvijas Finieris. It will for sure make a benchmark for future birch veneer mills to beat and show the true potential of Raute Green Veneer Mill Concept. · 42 PLYVISIONS APPOINTMENTS APPOINTMENTS APPOINTMENTS APPOINTMENTS APPOINTMENTS NEW APPOINTMENTS SAMPO JÄNTTI Business Manager, Modernizations. His previous position at Raute was Project Manager. VELI-MATTI LEPISTÖ Manager, Marketing communications. He is responsible for Raute's visual identity and marketing activities globally. JANNE KOUSA Engineering Manager. His previous position at Raute was Product Manager in the dry veneer handling team. DAINIS BUTANS Service Manager of Raute service Baltic in Riga, Latvia. RAY TYLER EDVARD KEMPPINEN Manager, CIS Technology services. His previous position at Raute was Account Manager. Senior Vice President of Raute's North American business operations. His previous position at Raute was Vice President, Manufacturing, Raute North America. ARI-PEKKA TIUSANEN Product Manager, Modernization. MARKO HJELT Group HR Manager. He previously held management position in personnel services company Go On and as consultant in Mercuri Urval. MARKUS HALMETOJA Specialist, Marketing and sales support. His focus areas include developing the marketing of technology services and sales support. TERO LEHTINEN Foreman, Maintenance. PLYVISIONS 43 Operating globally, acting locally Jyväskylä Nastola Kajaani St. Petersburg Riga Moscow Vancouver, BC Memphis, TN Shanghai Singapore Santiago Raute Representative Myrtleford Raute Corporation Head office and main production plant Rautetie 2 P.O. Box 69 FI-15551 Nastola Finland Tel. +358 3 829 11 Fax +358 3 829 3200 Raute Corporation Jyväskylä unit Laukaantie 4 FI-40320 Jyväskylä Finland Tel. +358 3 829 11 Fax +358 14 4499 0575 Raute Corporation Mecano Business Syväojankatu 8 FI-87700 Kajaani Finland Tel. +358 3 829 11 Fax +358 8 612 1982 Raute Canada Ltd. 1633 Cliveden Avenue Delta, B.C. Canada V3M 6V5 Tel. +1 604 524 6611 Fax: +1 604 521 4035 Raute US, Inc. c/o Barrett Distribution 4836 Hickory Hill Road Suite #128 Memphis, TN USA 38141 Tel. +1 800 448 8592 Fax +1 866 615 1379 Raute Chile Ltda. Hernando de Aguirre 162 Of. 1003 Providencia Santiago Chile Tel. +56 2 2233 4812 Fax +56 2 2233 4748 Raute Group Asia Pte Ltd. 35 Jalan Pemimpin # 06­02 Wedge Mount Industrial Building Singapore 577 176 Tel. +65 625 043 22 Fax +65 625 053 22 Raute (Shanghai) Machinery Co., Ltd Raute (Shanghai) Trading Co., Ltd 14 Building, No. 588, Yuanzhong Road Nan Hui Industry Zone, Pudong District, Shanghai City, China P.C. 201300 Tel. +86 21 5818 6330 Fax +86 21 5818 6322 Raute Service LLC Moscow Office Khoroskevskoe Shosse, 35, b. 1, office 208 123007 Moscow Russia Tel. +7 499 195 83 90 Raute Service LLC Moskovsky prospekt, 212 A, Office 4011 196066 St. Petersburg Russia Tel. +7 812 363 20 33 Fax +7 812 363 20 59